Alistair Campbell honoured at Royal College of Psychiatrists' #RCPsychAwards 2017

Press release
06 November 2017

Alastair Campbell honoured at Royal College of Psychiatrists’ #RCPsychAwards 2017

  • Alastair Campbell given honorary fellowship by RCPsych for his services to furthering the mental health agenda
  • Rev. Richard Coles and Norman Lamb MP among prominent figures presenting awards to those making significant contributions to the mental health sector

6 November 2017:

Former Downing Street ‘King of Spin’ Alastair Campbell has been awarded an honorary fellowship today by the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

Mr Campbell was recognised for his achievements in reducing the stigma attached to mental health and encouraging people to talk more about their own experiences.

Fellowship of the RCPsych is awarded as a mark of distinction and recognition of contributions to psychiatry and mental health.

On being awarded the fellowship, Mr Campbell said: "Winning the battle for de-stigmatisation is fine, but only if it’s accompanied by services and support that people can rely on when they need them and whey they can admit they need them... I’m not undermining or diminishing anything that doctors or surgeons in physical illness do, but in a way they have so much more to go on.

“Psychiatry is that very interesting mix of medical and more broadly human understanding of experience. The need for good psychological support service and clever young people going into psychiatry is greater than ever. I've been very lucky to have good psychiatrists at different times in my life; the guy who has been helping me for the last 12 years or so and the guy who helped me when I cracked up in Glasgow in the 80s."

Former Liberal Democrat Health Minister Norman Lamb MP is among those presenting awards at the ceremony in London today. Norman Lamb MP is well known in mental health campaigning, having spoken out about the vital importance of government attention to improve the nation’s mental wellbeing and the damaging effects of stigma.

Reverend Richard Coles, of recent Strictly Come Dancing fame, has been open and honest about his own struggles with mental health problems, and will also be in attendance.

The annual RCPsych Awards mark the highest level of achievement within the field of psychiatry, recognising and rewarding contributions to the mental health sector.

As well as presenting psychiatrists with awards, mental health teams are to be honoured to mark their clinical achievements outside.

Service users who have showed an outstanding commitment to promoting a better understanding of mental health will also be honoured.

There are 18 categories in the RCPsych Awards 2017:

1.    Medical Student of the Year

2.    Foundation Doctor of the Year

3.    Core Psychiatric Trainee of the Year

4.    Higher Psychiatric Trainee of the Year

5.    Service User/Patient Contributor of the Year

6.    Carer Contributor of the Year

7.    Psychiatric Communicator of the Year

8.    Psychiatric Trainer of the Year

9.    Academic Researcher of the Year

10. Speciality Doctor/Associate Specialist of the Year

11. Psychiatric of the Year

12. Psychiatric Team of the Year: Children and adolescents

13. Psychiatric Team of the Year: Working-age adults

14. Psychiatric Team of the Year: Older-age adults

15. Psychiatric Team of the Year: Non-age specific

16. Psychiatric Team of the Year: Learning disability

17. Psychiatric Team of the Year: Outstanding contribution to sustainability

18. Lifetime Achievement Award

Nominations for the RCPsych Awards 2018 will open in February.


Notes to editors

About the Royal College of Psychiatrists

1.    We are the professional medical body responsible for supporting over 18,000 psychiatrists in the UK and internationally.

2.    We set standards and promote excellence in psychiatry and mental healthcare.

3.    We lead, represent and support psychiatrists nationally and internationally to governments and other agencies.

4.    We aim to improve the outcomes of people with mental illness, and the mental health of individuals, their families and communities. We do this by working with patients, carers and other organisations interested in delivering high quality mental health services.

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